How to Cook an English Pot Roast

Boeuf Bourguignon
A plate of English pot roast with carrots, potatoes and mushrooms. (Image: Sarsmis/iStock/Getty Images)

Pot roast makes a convenient one-pot meal. A pot roast is a large cut of meat, slowly cooked in the oven in a covered container. English pot roast differs from the American version, in that it contains beef stock. The English roast uses more liquid, while the American roast stews in the meat's own juices. In addition, American pot roast recipes sometimes have an addition of mustard. Preparation for the dish is relatively simple, but leave enough time for slow cooking. If you baste the roast each half hour, the meat will become juicy and succulent.

Making English Pot Roast

Step 1

Ask your grocery store butcher to pick out a brisket or rolled rump roast for your dish. It should be approximately 2 1/2 lbs. Rolled rump roast is a cut of beef that comes from the cow's hip region. Butchers usually roll the meat and secure it with twine. Brisket is a cut of beef that comes from the breast area of the cow. Each of these cuts are large, usually rounded and relatively inexpensive, but require slow cooking to achieve tenderness.

Step 2

Use a sharp knife and cutting board to chop the carrots, onions and mushrooms into bite-sized pieces.

Step 3

Melt one pat of butter (about one tablespoon) in a medium-sized frying pan.

Step 4

Remove packaging and twine from your cut of meat.

Step 5

Add the whole cut of meat to the frying pan and cook on medium heat for two minutes in order to brown the bottom of the meat. Using two forks, carefully turn the meat to brown on the reverse side.

Step 6

Remove the meat from the pan with two forks or a pair of tongs and transfer the meat into a casserole dish.

Step 7

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Step 8

Take the chopped vegetables from the cutting board and cook them over low heat in the same frying pan that you used to brown the roast. This allows the vegetables to soak up some of the juices from the meat.

Step 9

Arrange the vegetables around, but not under, the pot roast in the casserole dish.

Step 10

Add the beef stock and seasonings, then cover the roast and vegetables in the casserole with aluminum foil or an oven-safe lid.

Step 11

Bake for 2 to 3 hours or until very tender. Using a meat thermometer to test the meat, make sure it reaches 160 degrees F. The meat will be well done and tender.

Step 12

Surround the roast with vegetables and serve on a platter.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharp knife

  • Cutting board

  • Casserole dish

  • Serving platter

  • 2 1/2 lbs. brisket or rolled roast

  • 3 red onions

  • 4 carrots

  • 1/4 lb. mushrooms

  • 1 cup beef stock

  • 1 table spoon butter

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • Thyme

  • 1 bay leaf

Tip

Serves 4 to 6 people.

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